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CPB Approves COVID-19 Funding Relief Plan

(Image credit: IronHeart via Getty Images)

The board of directors of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which hands out federal funding for noncommercial media, has approved a plan to distribute the $175 million in emergency funding for public media in the American Rescue Plan, President Biden's COVID-19 relief bill that passed Congress March 11.

The money is to be used "to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus, including for fiscal stabilization grants to public telecommunications entities," including "to maintain programming and services and preserve small and rural stations threatened by declines in non-Federal revenues."

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The CPB plan was agreed to by an advisory committee of public radio and TV representatives. 

According to the plan, "Of the $175 million, $100 million will be calculated using the CARES Act formula that was developed in April 2020 in order to prioritize funding to small, rural and/or minority stations. The remaining $75 million will be distributed according to the respective television and radio Community Service Grant (CSG) formulas, which also take into account stations’ service to rural communities, as well as the number of transmitters needed to cover large geographic areas, and the amount raised in non-federal financial support (NFFS)."

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"The stabilization funding from Congress will support essential public media services and sustain the broad reach and access that keeps public media resources available online, over-the-air and in communities across the country," said CPB President Patricia Harrison.

John Eggerton
John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.